In Memory of Tess (1tess)

I learned today that Tess Warn, a long-time volunteer and moderator on the support forums, passed away recently. My former coworker Jackie Dana wrote a beautiful post in Tess’s memory:

Tess, known as 1Tess on the forums, was the one and only volunteer moderator on the English support forums where I also worked. She had earned that unique role for her consistently helpful and pleasant demeanor, and she was always constructive in her approach. As happens in most online forums, such traits are rare among the “regulars” and it was no different there. She was a compassionate and friendly voice that rose above the not infrequent sour notes.

via Tess Warn: A dear woman who helped others until the very end | jackie dana.

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Kitchen Rhythm: A Year in a Parisian Pâtisserie


Two of my favorite things: baking and language.

“I think I can hear it but I can’t define it in words. Such is the problem with a manual skill, so too with a new language: how to translate your sensations through a new filter.”

Originally posted on Longreads Blog:

Frances Leech | Vintage | March 2013 | 14 minutes (3378 words)

The Longreads Exclusive below is based on Frances Leech’s ebook of the same name, published in 2013 by Vintage UK.


To make chocolate mousse, enough for 150 people, say, first whip the cream — liters and liters of it. Then, separately, whisk the egg yolks. Boil sugar and water and add to the yolks, still whisking, in a thin drizzle. Melt the chocolate, then stir, fold, and whisk everything together with some gelatin.

What is missing from this description, the bare-bones sketch in the red address book that alphabetizes all of my work recipes, is the physical sensations. When I started my apprenticeship in Paris a year ago, I learned that baking can be at once precise and vague. Measure everything to the last gram, simple enough. Harder to describe what the meringue mixture should look like when it is…

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… it is not your job to stop the bugs (or the versions containing them) from walking out the door.

Your job is to provide visibility into the status of your product and your project, and give everyone on the team the information they need to make their decisions.

After you have given everyone the correct information they will need to make the choice whether to release the product into the field or not. You may be part of this team making the decision, but your voice will never be the only one that counts!

From Joel Montvelisky’s Letter to a starting tester

Walking the Walk

I love walking and hiking, but in the winter it can be hard to motivate myself to ignore the cold/rain/gloom and go out for a walk. Even geocaching has trouble competing with the dismal weather. 

So I was pretty delighted when I came across a new app, The Walk. Basically, there’s a story in the app that’s divided into episodes. In each episode, you have to walk a certain number of minutes, and there’s incentive to walk consistently to finish each episode. By the end of the game you’ll have walked the entire length of the UK. Pretty awesome goal, especially for an expat living in the UK like me!

The same folks made the app Zombies, Run! That looks fun if you’re more into running than I am. (When it comes to building a long-term sustainable habit, walking is way more realistic for me.)